Escape to a simpler life

Corfe Mullen, Dorset, UK: What do you do if you want a break in the UK that isn’t going to cost the earth and gives you peace and relaxation away from the daily grind – I’ll tell you what you do, dip a toe in the world of Glamping that’s what. Take for example this wonderfully romantic shepherds hut, set in a secluded 27 acre plot with only a couple of yurts and one other shepherds hut for company – this is escapism at its best…
So, you find camping too much of a hassle, the weather is largely guesswork guarantee and there’s all that ‘stuff’ to carry… But with a roof over your head, the weather doesn’t seem to be much of an issue (especially when the roof is as pretty as this…) and here, pretty much everything you will need is laid on, so no hassle involved.

Area famous for: Gorgeous coastlines, sandy beaches and chalky cliffs, Dorset Knobs (sourdough biscuits!) and of course the New Forest.

The Site: Run by Gwen and Martin, this Eco friendly escape, grants you peace, tranquility and a little piece of English heaven all to yourself. Just off the A31 and close enough to both the sea and the New Forest, the location is perfect. You will find an escape from the tourist crowds here, but if you want to join them you are close enough to do so.

The Shepherds Hut: The one pictured here has been recently rebuilt on an original Victorian shassy and features the modern and perfect addition of a teeny veranda & roof.

Tucked away in a shady area, the hut is set within a small clearing containing seats and a brazier (to get you in the glamping mood). A small camp stove, with kettle and crockery (this can be used on your veranda, so no need to cook on the brazier…) and a water carrier. Inside the surprisingly roomy hut you will find a comfy double bed with all linen and some lovely fluffy towels, a folding table and two chairs, hidden storage for clothes and of course a fully functioning wood burning stove. On top of all this, Gwen and Martin provide you with a small hamper of goodies/breakfast essentials to get you started (Tea, coffee, sugar, fresh milk, fruit juice, fruit selection, cereal and some yummy biscuits), they really do think of everything, plus a cool box and ice packs to keep it all fresh. So all you have to do is sit back and relax. There are solar lights both inside and out so that you can find your way in the dark and a brolly (just in case).

Conveniences: There is a fully equipped cabin, with showers, toilets and electricity points. A little closer to your hut, you will have sole use of a porta loo, so that you don’t have to go far from your door at night. They also have the most fabulous eco friendly outside showers (which I thoroughly enjoyed using). The water is lovely and warm and all shower gels are provided as they are eco friendly ones. These showers have been specially designed and built to shield you from sight and any breeze, they really are great. But if the idea of showering outside freaks you out, there is always the cabin to fall back upon.

What to take: To be honest there’s not a lot of equipment you will need, but if you plan to cook, bring your own camp pans and cooking utensils. A couple of pocket torches are also a good idea as the terrain can be uneven underfoot. Apart from those few items, I have to say that my carefully packed camping kit was pretty much surplus to requirements.

Things to note: All fuel is provided for your brazier and your wood burning stove, and both are really effective. I would only light the stove for a short time before you retire, otherwise you will just be too hot (for such a small thing it mightily powerful). You are encouraged to forage for your own wood, as there is plenty lying around the woodland – but just remember that both the stove and the brazier can only take small pieces. Yes, I made that mistake a few times.

Wildlife: As you may or may not know by now, I love a bit of wildlife and so I was thrilled when I was told that at least one badger wanders the area, along with a few proper foxes (healthy country ones rather than the urban scroungers we are used to) and the occasional deer. You will also be given a dusk concert of tawny and little owls as they become more active. There are plenty of daytime birds loitering in the area if you like bird watching. so binoculars might be on your list of things to take as well.

I for one can’t wait to go back and enjoy this little gem again so that should tell you all you need know. You can check out their website here…> and book direct with Gwen here…> A lovelier couple you couldn’t hope to meet and they will do everything they can to make your stay a pleasant and memorable one. Enjoy!

Random facts: Glow worms (which are in fact beetles – go figure!)
• Only the females glow – to attract males.
• They glow by creating a bioluminescence, caused by chemical reaction in their bodies.
• Unlike fire flies, they can’t simply turn off the glow, it can minutes for them to fade.
• They are in decline, so don’t remove them from a site if you see one (they need specialist habitats) but report the sighting here…>